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Outlook 2013

I have read 96 books by the end of the first week of November, just 4 books short of my goal to read 100 books this year. I’m proud because I never thought I could have read this much. It wasn’t even I was under a lot of pressure, but rather being challenged to be focused. The time that I would have used to spend on surfing the internet and watching television translates into 25 more books read this year. So what’s for next year? I would like to keep the same pace and read at least 100 (with the pace I’m going now, I could end up with 114). I mentioned my staggering TBR pile yesterday, and the trips to Half Price Books in Dallas and here in Berkeley, CA didn’t help make a dent.

Speaking of the new Berkeley store, it takes the space that used to be a numerous incarnations: a Woolworth type of general store, a toy store, and a Halloween party store. It is a great place to buy books. Yes, there are a great many independent booksellers in the college town and the Oakland area, but Half Price Books is notable for being simply a great shopping experience. Price wise HPB is way better than Moe’s on Telegraph. Selection wise, not even close to Moe’s. However, if what you are looking for is a widely read book (not necessarily chick lit or bestseller), than Half Price will have it for, well “half price”. I shop here almost weekly. Their classics section is stocked well enough; I have yet to not find a title I was looking for.

The year 2013 will be filled with books acquired from this brand new HPB location. I also have a “save-the-best-for-last” habit: keep saving up and deferring books that I know are great reads to a weekend getaway or vacation. This is how Angle of Repose by Wallace Stegner, The Starboard Sea by Amber Dermont and The Secret History by Donna Tartt have remained indefinitely on the shelf. 2013 will also see the return of my favorite authors, to name a few, Andrea Levy, Hilary Mantel (I need to mentally prepare myself for Bring Up the Bodies after a strenuous Wolf Hall).

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7 Responses

  1. Sounds like 2013 is gearing up to be a great year! That bookstore looks wonderful! I could get lost in there for days.

  2. I was just making a list of authors I need to read in 2013. I’ve planned to read Nabokov, Dostoevsky, Eco and Mikhail Bulgakov (esp. The Master and Margarita, your influence). I wish there are such bookshops in Ghana. It’s quite expensive if you’re a reader here. The bookshops aren’t many and those who stock books have limited range at high prices.

  3. I think that keeping the goal of 100 books in a year is great, even for next year. I don’t think you need to “up” the amount each year unless you want to. 100 books each year for 5 years is 500 books. I mean, that’s a great number!

    BTW, I am also reading 100 books in a year, but my “year” started July 9. I know it’s confusing, but I actually started in January, then had friends convince me to start a blog about it, so I re-started in July and am currently blogging about my 100 books!

  4. Congrats–that’s so cool that you are so close to meeting (and surpassing) your goal! I’m not sure I could manage 100–I’m a good twenty books off–maybe if I really planned it and blogged less. I’ve been thinking a little about what I want to do in 2013–but no set plans. I have some projects that are ongoing and will start soon, but I’m just going ahead now rather than waiting for January to roll around. I do want to read more literary-type fiction (Wolf Hall and the likes). We’ll see–I make plans and then digress from them quickly it seems. Hope all is well with you Matt! :) Have you been to Dog Eared Books lately?

  5. Congrats on being so close to your goal! I read 100 books in 2009 and have been nowhere close since lol. I have 41/50 read right now for 2012. Pathetic. Especially since I am not working. :( Oh well. Stress makes me not be able to concentrate well. The new bookstore looks great. I would love to be browsing in there.

  6. You’ve had a great 2012 and seem to be ready for a great 2013 on the reading front! I can’t wait to hear about all of the 100+ books that you end up reading!

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